Many foods, drinks, herbs, and ingredients are toxic to our pets. When we think of some of the top contenders, most people are aware of the health hazards that chocolate can induce in pets, and with Halloween just around the corner, what better time to discuss these foods and the risks they pose to our pet’s wellbeing.
Chocolate causes severe toxicity with just a minimal amount, especially dark chocolate. Some of the side effects are vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, seizures, rapid heart rate, and in some cases, death. The smaller the breed, the more dangerous chocolate can be, as well as the amount of chocolate the animal has ingested.
Raisins, grapes, and cherries are also very toxic to animals. Grapes and raisins affect the liver and kidneys in dogs and cats. Even if eaten in small amounts, it can cause significant damage and death. Cherries are poisonous to cats and dogs and can cause respiratory failure and death. The pits and seeds in fruits (cherries, avocado, peaches, apples) contain cyanide, so these are especially toxic and can also cause choking.
Sugar is not necessarily toxic, but it is not suitable for cats or dogs to eat sugar (Hello Halloween Candy), because as with humans, sugar can lead to diabetes, obesity, shaking, lethargy, and dental decay. Sugar alternatives like xylitol are incredibly toxic to dogs. Don’t ever let your pet eat candy, mints, toothpaste, or gum made with xylitol or other sugar substitutes.
Nuts can cause severe reactions in dogs and cats, this especially true of macadamia nuts. If your pet gets into Halloween candy that is packed with chocolate and nuts, this can be a double whammy. If it also has dried cherries or raisin, it’s not a good combination. But again, if this happens, it’s important to try and figure out how much they consumed and also to take their size into consideration. If a Chihuahua eats a box of dark chocolate Raisinets® or a Snickers® bar, then you definitely will want to seek medical attention. It’s always best to be proactive, so even if a Border Collie eats the same amount, getting them checked out will be the best option for your pet’s health.
Aside from Halloween candy, some people think it’s okay to feed animals leftovers or give them food scraps from the table but understanding the difference between safe foods and the dangerous ones is imperative to your pet’s health.
A Few Other Toxic Foods for Pets:
Onions and garlic can cause anemia in pets. Anything in that family, such as powdered spices, chives, scallions, shallots, these are all very toxic to cats and dogs.
Bones may seem like a reasonable thing to give a dog, but they can splinter very easily, which can cause choking, blocked airways, and internal bleeding. Fat trimmings or other fatty foods can lead to liver and pancreatic disorders.
Mushrooms in the yard are especially toxic to animals. Even if your curious puppy eats a small mushroom, the toxicity can cause severe gastrointestinal issues, seizures and even death.
There are so many things that can cause toxicity in your pets; it is best only to feed them their allocated dog or cat food and treats. If your pet gets into Halloween candy or other toxic foods, don’t hesitate! Get to your veterinarian’s office or the Animal ER as soon as possible.
Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital in Naples offers the most up to date and progressive veterinary services for your pets. Ranging from Laser Surgery, Ultrasound, Dental Xrays, Radiology, Full Pharmacy, and In House Diagnostics, Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital provides your pets with the necessary options for treatment.
Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital
2700 Imokalee Rd., Suite 16
Naples, FL 34110